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Rapa Nui Rocks Update


Easter Island is not the only place where ancient people moved .huge rocks into places too constricted to accommodate the long columns of laborers needed to drag them there. The construction ramp leading up to the Inca "Fortress" of Ollantaytambo in Peru is another classic example. Blocks there weighing more than 50 tons were first transported to the very steep (1:4, or 25%), narrow (six meters wide) ramp onto its dead-end at a shear 16 meter drop-off. Once there, they were rotated 90 degrees around a sharp left tum, moved across a tiny (15 meter square) hilltop plaza and levered up to a vertical position. It was the Andean equivalent of rotating and raising a 50 ton moai onto a high seacoast ahu and could not have been done by large gangs of people pulling on ropes, since there was no place for them to work.